Who wants a ride?

23 Mar

So the wife is in Boston, and I am home with the little one all week, which means that I will be drinking a beer almost every night.  I gotta cope, right?  People just don’t understand what a 3 year old can do to your psyche after a couple of days…sounds like a good time for a mustache ride, don’t it?

More like Mustache Rye’d Red Ale from Flat Tail Brewing in Corvallis.  Even used the appropriate pint glass to drink it!  Ever since our Brewvana tour of this fine establishment, I have been trying to get my hands on whatever they are bottling.  Their whole ethos really struck a chord with me.  They are all about brewing and drinking really great, fresh beer.  Fresh being the key word here.  Beer is meant to be drank as soon as it’s ready, in their humble opinion.  “Ready” usually means within a few weeks of the beer being kegged/bottled.  And to be quite honest, I have slowly started to realize that I agree with them.  Don’t get me wrong…aged beers are wonderful (which Flat Tail also agrees with) and I have plenty of them in my fridge/garage, but there is something about beer that is fresh  Something beautiful.  It’s crisp.  It’s clean.  You make it, then you consume it.  Very much like cooking a meal, right?

I am also a big fan of rye as an ingredient in beer, and this beer only serves to justify that love.  One thing I will say though…rye beers tend to taste better to me once they have had a chance to warm up.  The flavor of the rye comes through better once the temps are higher.  This particular beer was 8% ABV and just as I suspected, it was better once it had some time to warm up.  Everything just seemed to balance perfectly after it had time to sit.

This lovely little bomber poured a nice cloudy amber color with a head that had some shelf life.  Once it started to retreat, a nice lacing was left on the top inch of the pint glass.  The smell was resinous and grapefruity, which was lovely.  They use a variety of hop called Australian Galaxy, which I am not at all familiar with…hence the link for beer brewing nerds everywhere.  The beer tastes initially sweet, but that gives way to the rye and bitter flavors almost immediately.  As for body…whoa boy!  This sucker has stamina!  I imagine all that grain is meant to help stand up to the hops and higher alcohol, as this reminded me of the body on a (women’s college soccer player) Imperial IPA I recently tried.  Since it got better as it warmed up (as do women’s college soccer players, incidentally), I would be stoked to try it at the pub on draft.  Hmmmmm, might be time for a trip down south with the gang…

Food Pairing:  This would be great with a plate of chicken/pork schnitzel, herbed-spaetzle, and either roasted apples or sauerkraut (don’t forget the mustard).  The rye flavors and lovely hop nose would stand up to, and compliment, the fat and butter in a dish like this.  It’s rich enough to compliment the food, without drowning out the bold flavors.  The sharpness of a solid mustard…and perhaps some good cheese, would help bring out the spiciness of the rye and compliment this beer.  Two pints of this though, and you’re done.  But oh what a lovely two pints those would be.

If you haven’t had anything from Flat Tail yet, give ’em a try.  They are probably brewing some of the better “true to form” beers in Oregon right now.  Nothing super-fancy, just downright good.

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2 Responses to “Who wants a ride?”

  1. cw3blog April 6, 2012 at 11:05 PM #

    I wish i could get this in my hood. Unless i’m missing something we don’t have bottle shops in the bay area. The closest thing is beer revolution in oakland; i should stop by there and see if i can take a ryde.

  2. Brian April 7, 2012 at 12:35 AM #

    Not sure Flat Tail is distributing outside of Oregon at this point. You may have to come up to Portland to get a ryde! Hint, hint…

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